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They’re Meant to ‘Prepare’ Children For School

By Prachi Desai

The main purpose of pre-primary education now is to prepare children physically, mentally, socially and emotionally for formal education. Studies suggest children who attend pre-primary schools learn faster in formal schooling set ups as they quickly grasp the structured curriculums.

Pre-primary education has now become important for children of the age group 3 years – 6 years
The demands of the competitive world today have put immense pressure on parents and their children to perform better than others and excel in academic life. Pre-primary education has now become important for children of the age group 3 years – 6 years. And, with the lack of family support, in nuclear families of all socio-economic backgrounds, pre-primary schooling is a necessity.

So, Rakhi Talwade, a corporation communications executive working in a PR firm in Mumbai and her maid Shanti Parab, both drop their respective children to day-care centres before they leave for work. While Rakhi’s three-year-old daughter goes to a private nursery school that offers facilities of day care and pre-primary schooling, Shanti drops off her two and half-year-old son to a crèche run specifically for children of migrant workers. “The crèche is my lifeline and it ensures that my older daughter can go to school rather than looking after her younger brother at home,” comments Shanti.

Rakhi, on the other hand, can afford a full-time nanny at home but sends her daughter to the nursery, primarily to prepare her for the admission process she will soon face. “I want to send my daughter to the best school in Mumbai and it is important to lay the right foundation at an early stage and prepare her for the demands in the future.”

In India, pre-primary education is also called ‘kindergarten’ (KG) which means children’s garden. So, pre-primary education includes playschools, nurseries, lower/junior KG and upper/senior KG. The structure, curriculum and activities vary in pre-schools vary around the world. In India, many schools have their own nursery and kindergarten facilities and the children directly get promoted to Class 1 (primary school) after completing their upper KG.

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